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MONEY in Thailand ... first time traveler...

Travel Forums Asia MONEY in Thailand ... first time traveler...

1. Posted by Ofie (Budding Member 22 posts) 6y

Hey so to make it as simple as possible.
I will be in thailand for 5 weeks...
1. how much should i plan on spending each week in dollars or baht?
2. should i bring all the cash with me?
3. how does the atm work there? ... service charge?...
4. is it better to exchange money before leave or there.. and how much should i bring on the first day...

thank you.. so far figuring out the money situation is making me nuts lol

THANK YOU

2. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 1653 posts) 6y

Quoting Ofie

Hey so to make it as simple as possible.
I will be in thailand for 5 weeks...
1. how much should i plan on spending each week in dollars or baht?
2. should i bring all the cash with me?
3. how does the atm work there? ... service charge?...
4. is it better to exchange money before leave or there.. and how much should i bring on the first day...

thank you.. so far figuring out the money situation is making me nuts lol

THANK YOU

This question comes up pretty often for Thailand. A quick forum search will give you some more ideas.

Make sure you can stay 5 weeks. Coming from Canada you can get a 30 day entry stamp in your passport. If you are staying longer you have to have a visa or leave Thailand and return.

Not everyone spends money the same way. Some travelers stay in crap cheap hostels and some travelers stay in fancy 5 star hotels. There is no one figure for every traveler. Roughly if you have available the same amount of money you would spend in your own capital city for the same time you shouldn't be too far off. You can eat cheap off the street, eat cheap in food courts and from small restaurants or you may be the type that every meal has to be a show with waiters and fancy dishes. Backpackers get by spending less than 300 baht a day. There is no shortage of places to eat in Thailand in all price ranges.

You can bring cash but only take the largest denomination currency that is in good condition. You can use ATM's for cash withdrawals but be aware that there is a 150 baht surcharge for every withdrawal so take out the maximum you can at one time. You can also change cash and travelers checks pretty easy at the airport and in many places in the city. With travelers checks you will have a fee of 33 baht per check so don't waste fees on small checks get the big denominations. When you fly home you will have an opportunity to change your Thai baht over to your own currency 24 hours a day.

If you plan on using an ATM they work the same way they do in the US or Canada. I have only used a 4 digit pin number in Thailand. There are ATM's all over Bangkok and major cities. My preference is to use an ATM when the supporting bank is nearby and open. That way if the card jams you can get the bank to open up the ATM. You do have to notify your bank or credit union that you will be in Thailand or the withdrawal may not be authorized because your bank suspects fraud. (My advice is to use cash for cheap purchases in restaurants and stores to lessen any chance of fraud.)

Don't change money over Thai baht before you get to Thailand. You can change your currency to Thai baht 24 hours a day at the airport. You will get your best exchange rate in Thailand. There is NO reason to bring any Thai baht with you to Thailand! Stores and hotels usually have a lower exchange rate than the many bank money changers.

My preference is to keep a credit card for emergencies and use cash, travelers checks and debit cards in Thailand. Some banks and many credit unions provide travelers checks without any fees.

Use the security box to safeguard any valuables and excess cash. If you are the type to use credit cards for everything everywhere you go keep in mind that some fraudulent charges could show up on your next monthly statement. Hotels are usually okay though for charging rooms.

Good luck.

3. Posted by Rambler1 (Budding Member 51 posts) 6y

Hey ya,

Travelling in Thailand cater well tourists from backpackers to people with a larger budget. Minimum amount of cash you really need for travel, food and hotels are about £15 English pounds. I'm not sure which dollar you are referring to. This will give you the budget of a backpacker with still enough to travel about on trains, buses and ferries.

Don’t worry too much about cash. There are ATM's everywhere in Thailand. I little bit to start you off is always helpful, take a credit card encase you lose you cash card and £100 worth of Traveller Cheques is handing encase you lose everything else. Keep your money in different parts if you bag, pockets and backpack to ensure if you lose one you still have another.

ATM will charge you a service charge, check with your bank.

Take £50-150 on your first day to get you started. Queues at atms in Bangkok can be quiet long and bit of a pain so get out large amounts of money at a time.

And have fun!!

4. Posted by Ofie (Budding Member 22 posts) 6y

thanks so much! really helpfull advice :)

5. Posted by lfcfanuk (Budding Member 24 posts) 6y

Cheers Karazyal

I was going to get some Thai Baht before I go....

I will just get some american dollors so I have something with me when I get there now

6. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 1653 posts) 6y

Quoting lfcfanuk

Cheers Karazyal

I was going to get some Thai Baht before I go....

I will just get some american dollors so I have something with me when I get there now

It all depends on the currency your country uses. Most currencies are easy to change in Thailand, no problem with US dollars, Euros, Pounds, etc.

Here is a list from a couple banks, your currency may be on it.

http://www.bangkokbank.com/bangkok%20bank/web%20services/rates/pages/fx_rates.aspx

http://www.kasikornbank.com/EN/RatesAndFees/ForeignExchange/Pages/ForeignExchange.aspx

If your currency is accepted you save money by not exchanging twice. If you normally use pounds just bring them for exchange.

Good luck.